Elgato to Bring Hardware h.264 Encoding to the Mac

turbo264_hardware.jpgSince the introduction of the h.264 codec, users have fallen in love with the beautiful picture quality and small file size. This revolutionary codec has made its way into several consumer products, including the iPod as well as Blu-Ray and HD DVD formats. There is truly no comparison to almost any other codec on the market. Consequently there is one small flaw, encoding times are astronomical. With the recent processor speed bumps the sluggishness of an h.264 is barley tolerable. Professionally, this is acceptable, but consumers don’t want to wait forever to get video on their iPod.

Enter the Elgato Turbo 264, a incredibly cool USB hardware h.264 encoder for the Mac. Currently there is not a lot of information about this product, but what little is available looks very promising.

iPhone Scene Reports:

Elgato announced a new hardware for mac that helps you to encode your movies for your iPod, Apple TV or the upcoming iPhone.

The Turbo 264 is a USB stick that is very easy to use. Plug it in your mac, install the software and you are ready to go. The stick is a H.264 video encoder hardware that helps you to encode movies in H.264 format that are playable on your iPod, Apple Tv or iPhone. Of course you could play this files also in Quicktime or iTunes and other devices as Sony’s PSP or various other mobile phones.

The stick speeds up encoding by two up to four times the speed and takes the encoding process from the CPU to the stick so that you could work on your mac unrestricted.

The stick could be used from any appilcation that uses Quicktime to export to H264 format for example iMovie HD or Elgato EyeTV. To use it with Quicktime you will need Quicktime Pro but Elgato also offers a simple application that comes with the stick to encode movies.

Elgato hopes to release the stick at the end of April 2007 for 99 Euros.

Geeky Mac will keep you informed as more details emerge. And with any luck we hope to review this product in the near future.